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Inequality of outcomes and inequality of opportunities in Brazil

Author

Listed:
  • Fran?s Bourguignon
  • Francisco H. G. Ferreira
  • Marta Menendez

Abstract

The authors depart from John Roemer's theory of equality of opportunities. They seek to determine what part of observed outcome inequality may be attributed to differences in observed"circumstances,"including family background, and what part is due to"personal efforts."The authors use a microeconometric technique to simulate what the distribution of outcomes would look like if circumstances were the same for everybody. They apply this technique to Brazilian data from the 1996 household survey, both for earnings and for household incomes. The authors show that observed circumstances are a major source of outcome inequality in Brazil, probably more so than in other countries for which information is available. Nevertheless, the level of inequality after observed circumstances are equalized remains very high in Brazil.

Suggested Citation

  • Fran?s Bourguignon & Francisco H. G. Ferreira & Marta Menendez, 2003. "Inequality of outcomes and inequality of opportunities in Brazil," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3174, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:3174
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ferreira, Francisco H. G. & Lanjouw, Peter & Neri, Marcelo Côrtes, 2003. "A Robust Poverty Profile for Brazil Using Multiple Data Sources," Revista Brasileira de Economia - RBE, FGV/EPGE - Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil), vol. 57(1), January.
    2. Thomas Piketty, 1995. "Social Mobility and Redistributive Politics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 551-584.
    3. Jere R. Behrman & Alejandro Gaviria & Miguel Székely, 2001. "Intergenerational Mobility in Latin America," ECONOMIA JOURNAL, THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION - LACEA, vol. 0(Fall 2001), pages 1-44, August.
    4. Valéria Pero, 2001. "Et, à Rio, plus ça reste le même... Tendências da mobilidade social intergeracional no Rio de Janeiro," Anais do XXIX Encontro Nacional de Economia [Proceedings of the 29th Brazilian Economics Meeting] 096, ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pósgraduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of Graduate Programs in Economics].
    5. Kaivan Munshi & Mark Rosenzweig, 2006. "Traditional Institutions Meet the Modern World: Caste, Gender, and Schooling Choice in a Globalizing Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1225-1252, September.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Economic Theory&Research; Public Health Promotion; Curriculum&Instruction; Teaching and Learning; Health Monitoring&Evaluation; Health Monitoring&Evaluation; Teaching and Learning; Economic Theory&Research; Inequality; Poverty Impact Evaluation;

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion

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